The action camera market isn’t a two-horse race between GoPro and DJI – Insta360 is also a big player, especially with its latest offering, the Ace Pro. We’ve already had a good time with the 8K shooter, and you can find out more in our Insta360 Ace Pro hands-on review. It has unparalleled features that potentially make it one of the best action cameras ever made.
Of course, it’s 8K video recording that takes center stage – that’s something neither the GoPro Hero 12 Black nor the DJI Osmo Action 4 can do, but the Ace Pro offers much more than that. high resolution video.
It has essentially the same 1/1.3-inch sensor as the Osmo Action 4, which is larger than that of the Hero 12 Black, and takes 48 MP photos in raw JPEG or DNG format. If you don’t need 8K video – which will be available via a firmware update upon release – then the 4K video feature set is very solid, shooting up to 120fps.
Insta360 Ace Pro and Ace: price and availability
The Insta360 Ace Pro is available now and costs $449.99 / £429.99 / AU$729, which is decent value for money. There is also a budget “Ace” version of the camera, which has a smaller 1/2-inch sensor and a “regular” lens. Its list price is $379.99 / £359.99 / AU$609.
Insta360 also used AI neural networks to denoise video footage to provide clear, low-light videos in “PureVideo” mode, and had an Active HDR video mode when the light is good. You also get Insta360’s FlowState stabilization for smooth footage and GoPro-style 360-degree horizon lock that maintains your video levels regardless of the action taking place.
Then there’s its awesome design. Unlike its rivals, the physically larger and heavier Ace Pro has a larger touchscreen and flips up to take selfies. When you’re on the move shooting videos and photos, the easier view from any angle is especially convenient, whether you’re vlogging or shooting sports.
There are also AI-assisted video tools, like gesture control to activate photo and video recording modes with a timer, as well as video editing tools that can select the best parts of your clips for you. You also have the choice of quick-release magnetic mounts like the Osmo Action 4, as well as the standard mount like GoPro on similar devices or on handlebars and helmets. The camera is also waterproof up to 10m.
Analysis: Insta360 advantage?
On paper, and as our hands-on review reveals, the Insta360 Ace Pro is one of the best action cameras available, even without its 8K video recording being available ahead of the announcement. It combines a lot of what we love about the Hero 12 Black and the Osmo Action 4 in one package, adding its own unique features as well.
Surely we have the world’s best action camera in our hands, then? Well, yes and no. There’s a balance between quality and quantity with a small sensor like the one used in these action cameras. The Insta360 packs a lot of pixels and at the time of writing there is no option for Log color profile like that of Hero 12 Black, so there is a limit to the changes you can make to the color.
Video quality is really good, but when shooting, even with HDR video mode, we noticed a disparity between photo and video quality, with photos being noticeably more detailed. After all, we expect most users to primarily use a camera like this for video.
Improvements may come in the future via firmware updates, and we’ll look at comparisons between the best action cameras, and of course, we’ll really test that 8K feature. So far, Insta360 has really shaken things up with the Ace Pro – it really is a great action camera.